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Old 06-25-2009, 11:39 AM   #1
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Instructions on towing new 2009 Wrangler?

We just purchased a new 2009 Wrangler X to replace our lovable, old 1993 Ford Escort. We plan on using the existing Brake Buddy from our Escort, but purchased a new Blue Ox tow bar (had the Aladdin and am selling it - purchased the new heavier Aventa LX) and had the new baseplate and wiring installed. My husband has read all the instructions he can get his hands on - but is there anything else we should know before towing the jeep for the first time? We head out this weekend! Thank you!
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Old 06-26-2009, 12:22 AM   #2
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Another 2009 Wrangler Towing Procedure

Yet another ďHow to Tow the 2009 JK WranglerĒ procedure, but this one is for idiots.

Iíve read many instructions for towing the wrangler 4-down, including the ownerís manual. Although they are all correct, they omit certain steps that the author assumes have been read in the Ownerís Manual in detail by the new owner, yea right. This procedure is for the idiots, like me, who are clueless when it comes to driving the wrangler and a Four Wheel Drive vehicle. I know what youíre thinking, another old coot with a jeep behind his motorhome; and youíre right. Itís my TOAD.

After the wife, who is as knowledgeable as I, and I attempted to follow the available procedures, we had few successes. For example, in order to shift the automatic transmission you must have the battery connected, key in pos 3, and the brake pedal depressed. Simple for most, I guess: but Iím 70-years-old. Not the sharpest tool in the shed anymore. Therefore, I offer this procedure for the 21st Century technically challenged, mature RVer. Maybe not the best, but it worked for me... well, most of the time.


2009 Jeep Wrangler JK Towing


Prior to Towing or Driving, Know Your Vehicle

1. Battery must be connected, key on, and Brake Pedal(BP) depressed in order to shift Automatic Transmission(AT).
2. It may be easier to shift Transfer Case(TC) with engine running.
3. *CAUTION* Damage to transmission may occur if transmission is shifted into Park(P) with the transfer case in Neutral(N) and engine running. *IMPORTANT* do not shift AT into P with TC in N, and engine running.
4. Ensure power to wheels is disconnected by running engine; shifting TC into Neutral(N), and AT into Drive(D).


Prepare to Tow

1. Attach Vehicle to Motorhome(MH).
2. Turn key to position 3.
3. Depress Brake Pedal(BP).
4. Shift AT into N, TC into N, Start engine.
5. Shift AT into D. Ensure no vehicle movement.
6. *IMPORTANT* TURN OFF ENGINE by moving key to ACC (POS 2). Key can not be removed at this point.
7. Depress BP if not already depressed.
8. *IMPORTANT ENGINE SHOULD BE OFF* Shift AT into P.
9. Ensure Parking Brake(PB) is released.
10. Disconnect negative battery cable, and secure it away from negative battery post.


Prepare to Drive

1. *IMPORTANT* set PB, ask me how I know this is important.
2. Disconnect vehicle from MH.
3. Reconnect negative battery cable.
4. Turn key to Pos 3.
5. Depress BP.
6. Shift AT from P into N.
7. Shift TC to desired position (2H). If TC cannot be shifted, start engine, and try again. AT may need to be shifted into D in order to properly align the mating teeth. Shift AT to desired position.
8. Release PB, and BP; and you are good to go.
9. Happy Motoring!
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Old 06-26-2009, 01:21 AM   #3
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Hi BORN2RV,
I recently purchased a 2009 Wrangler JK (2-Door). I use the Brake Buddy, the Blue Ox Aventa LX tow bar, and Blue Ox base plates. This Monday was the shakedown cruise from Houston to the Coushatta Casino in Kinder, Louisiana, 175 miles. We returned home today; fortunately, with the Wrangler in tow. My motorhome is a 2003, 37 foot, Kountry Star Diesel Pusher. I am only aware of the Wrangler in turns, stopping situations, and passing, which is seldom. Otherwise, on the Interstate, I never know itís there.
Attaching the vehicle to the motorhome, and performing all the necessary steps for a safe tow, can be challenging for the first few trips. I recommend a checklist, especially if you are easily distracted. The 100-degree heat here in Texas and LA add to the frustration. For me, I definitely need one.
After attempting many procedures, I developed my own, which works most of the time. We ran many dry runs before the trip. My post may be helpful, and is titled Another 2009 Wrangler Towing Procedure.
I was careful with the Brake Buddy, setting the sensitivity to 4. I didnít wish to burn up the brakes on the first run.
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Old 06-26-2009, 07:36 AM   #4
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Thank you so much for your checklist! I've printed it and will give it to my hubby. We had a checklist for our 1993 Ford Escort, too, on a little 3 X 5 card. We kept it right in the glove box and made sure we never missed a step. Thanks again!
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Old 06-26-2009, 06:36 PM   #5
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Hi again, I forgot to tell you that the Wrangler X (JK) does not have a steering wheel lock. The Ownerís Manual describes in detail how to engage the lock, but none exists. I called the dealerís service department, and they confirmed this by trying four different Wranglers.
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Old 06-27-2009, 03:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by palladrj View Post
Hi again, I forgot to tell you that the Wrangler X (JK) does not have a steering wheel lock. The Ownerís Manual describes in detail how to engage the lock, but none exists. I called the dealerís service department, and they confirmed this by trying four different Wranglers.
Just tested this on my '08 and the steering wheel locks with the key out of the ignition and the wheel turned half a turn in either direction (as per the manual). My neighbor has an '09 and when he gets home I will check his, but hard to believe they are not the same.

In thinking all of this through, I believe the reason you have to turn your ignition key to the first position is so that the key will not fall out if you were to leave it in the ignition so the the wheel would not lock. I have installed the US Gear set-up in mine. This provides 12v from the coach directly to the battery in the Jeep. I checked the current draw on the Jeep battery in the acc position and it is about 1.2 amps. This is certainly within the capacity of the wire between the coach to the Jeep. I spoke to US Gear and they recommended putting a scissor type battery disconnect switch on the positive battery terminal. The concern is that you might draw the battery down. I am sure they also do not want to deviate a lot from the manufacturers recommendation. I am going to spend more time with this. I have towed with the Jeep in the acc position and not disconnected the battery. Will see as I get more data. My neighbor and I talked about just putting a small bungee cord around the key and the column so that the key could not fall out. Maybe the next time out I will have the wife sit in the car for a short distance and we will see what goes on.
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Old 06-27-2009, 07:32 PM   #7
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My neighbor got back and the steering wheel on his '09 does NOT lock. This is consistent with your findings. Good info.
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Old 06-28-2009, 06:33 PM   #8
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From my experience, both the 2007 and 2008 model year JK's (Wrangler) have locking steering wheels, hence the reason to turn the key to the first position - which un-locks the steering wheel. Unfortunately, this first key position also turns on the accessories and even though fan, radio, etc. are in the "off" position, the Jeep will draw more than 2.5 amps continuously. The Jeep manual recommends to disconnect the battery for towing and this is probably the best idea. An alternative that people are using is to lift the "Ignition Off Draw" (IOD) fuse.

If the 2009's don't have a steering wheel lock, then it would be interesting to see what the manual says for the key position for towing. If no lock, I would thing that there's NO reason to use the key at all.
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Old 06-29-2009, 07:15 AM   #9
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There is a fuse you can pull up. It is white and looks like it has wings on each side. No need to remove the battery cable.
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Old 06-29-2009, 11:01 PM   #10
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If you are using a brake controller to depress (or pull) the brake pedal inside of the Jeep, then you should heed the Owner's Manual's recommendation to disconnect the battery for towing. Otherwise, the brake pedal will activate the Jeep's brake lights and the brake light signal will overide the flashing turn signal pulse.

If you are not using an auxillary brake controller, then you may prefer to lift the IOD fuse instead of disconnecting the battery cable. If you ARE usinging an auxillary brake controller then you can always lift the IOD fuse AND remove the brake fuse.... but then it is probably just easier to disconnect the battery cable.

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Old 07-20-2009, 09:34 PM   #11
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Jeep toad brake problem

HELP! I have a 2009 Jeep Wrangler X that I pull with a Class C Winnebago Aspect. On a trip a couple of months ago, I experienced a feeling that the jeep breaks were locking up, especially at the beginning of the tripe while going around a curve. On my most current trip the problem worsened. When leaving Payson. AZ I was going down a hill with a curve and my jeep brakes apparently locked for about two seconds, then released. The problem didnít repeat the rest of the way to Deming. Upon leaving Deming, the lockup occurred again going around a curve. Leaving Ruidoso, again, a lockup when turning a shallow curve. A few minutes later, going down a hill in a straight trajectory, the brakes locked up again (2-3 seconds) so severely that I drug the jeep for about 10 yards. I pulled over and went through the process of placing the jeep back into TWD and then putting it back in tow mode. The rest of the trip was uneventful. I stopped at a Jeep dealer in Santa Fe, explained the situation and they had no solution. One other thing that may or may not be related to the problem. When starting the Jeep, momentarily the ESP/BAS indicator comes on along with an icon showing a car skidding. However, in my Jeep, those indicators occasionally pop up while driving, sometimes staying on for several miles before going off. There is also a possibility Iím somehow not setting the Jeep up properly for towing. Here is the sequence I follow which pretty much follows the manual (1) Ignition on ACC (2) Transmission in neutral (3) transfer case to neutral (4) transmission to park (5) emergency break off. My only deviation is I donít start the Jeep to make sure its in neutral (Itís fairly obvious when the shift knob is in the neutral position) and I donít disconnect the negative battery terminal (I need power for when I use the brake buddy). To answer an anticipated question someone might have, I verified the brake freeze up was not the result of a brake buddy malfunction. I also verified that my tow hookups were proper (no binding). Any ideas would be appreciated.
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Old 07-20-2009, 10:17 PM   #12
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Well, I have some comments and potentially ideas for you to try.

1. The Jeep's stability management system is known to be pretty aggressive - although I'm not sure it is the cause of the braking that you describe. When you are driving your Jeep, is the steering wheel perfectly centered? The ECU relies a lot on steering wheel angle and if your wheel's not super straight, then the lights you mention may chime and come on. Fixing your steering wheel to be straight (if it is not) is a very minor adjustment of your drag link. (It DOES NOT involve touching your steering wheel at all.)

2. The sequence to move the shift levers is to verify that you successfully placed the transfer case in Neutral. So, follow the steps in the manual and then just to be sure, you can place the Jeep in Drive. You should be able to rev the Jeep's engine, with the transfer case in Neutral and the gear selector in Drive. If the engine revs and the Jeep doesn't move, you obviously have the transfer case in Neutral (where it should be for towing). As a last step, place the gear selector back into Park, and turn off the ignition.

3. Beginning with the 2009 Model Year Wrangler, ALLEGEDLY there is no more steering wheel lock. *IF* this is the case, you should be able to tow the Jeep with the key OFF and OUT of the ignition. (Before doing this, you should consult with your dealer to insure you have no steering wheel lock.)

4. As it seem you are a "follow the manual" kind of guy, do you disconnect the battery before towing? If so, there's absolutey NO WAY the Jeep could be braking by itself. Again, follow step 3 above (confirm with your local dealer) OR disconnect the negative cable from the battery BEFORE towing.

5. Finally, I'd be most suspect of the calibration of the aux braking system you are using. If you follow my recommendations above and the problem persists, then for sure it is the braking device.

Let us know what you find.
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Old 07-20-2009, 11:15 PM   #13
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I need the battary Connected

Thanks much for the comprehensive response. As mentioned in my post I usually skip turning the vehicle on to verify it's in neutral. I will hence forth follow the nanuel! I don't disconnect the neg battery cable because the Brake Buddy plugs into the 12 V socket for power. To compensate for the battery drain I installed a connection from the house battery to the Jeep battery to provide added support. Could this be the problem?
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Old 07-21-2009, 05:37 AM   #14
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Found this today, it addresses the Steering Wheel Lock Issue.

http://www.wranglerforum.com/f33/doe...ock-33093.html
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